A Challenge For Happiness..

I don’t know about everybody else but, I am finding lockdown 3.0 very difficult. Maybe it’s because this time around it’s more difficult to go out for walks etc because it’s freezing. Or maybe it’s the fact that we keep ending up in more lockdown’s every time we think things are looking up. Who knows. All I do know is, I have found myself struggling.

The world is so uncertain right now and it’s taking a toll on all of us in many different ways. I sometimes struggle to actually get up and get out of bed – if it wasn’t for my full-time job I probably never would. I’ve spent many mornings slowly dragging myself out of bed to go to the laptop in the next room and start work while still wearing my PJs.

The mad thing is, before Covid-19 I was such an early person. I used to get up around 6am every day, get up, get dressed.. most of the time I am in the office hours earlier than I need to be, or on the days where I decide to actually not overwork I would always be commuting by 8.15. On average I would do about an hours worth of walking a day to and from work alone.

Now, I am lucky if I take a five minute walk round the block once a week and I’m tired all the time. Obviously, having conditions like anxiety and ADHD can make these things ten times worse. Doing general day to day movements seems like a chore and I need to snap out of it.

Because I don’t like the person I’m being right now, lazy and miserable. I’ve decided to motivate myself a bit more and challenge myself to be happy every day.

I am doing this using a few different methods…

100 Happy Days Challenge – as of last weekend I started getting involved in the 100 Happy Days challenge on my Instagram account (zoeallard86), I post a picture every day for 100 days of something that has made me happy out of the day. The thing I love about this is, to do this you are forced to sit there and think about the good things that came out of the day. Not the bad things. we’re so used to thinking about how shit the days been that we sometimes can ignore very positive things.

Keeping busy, and educated – as I’ve already mentioned before, I am an aspiring writer and am currently doing a comprehensive writing course – I love it, but on certain modules it can be a bit demotivating because story writing is ultimately what I’d love to do. But that being said, I have quite enjoyed writing nonfiction pieces and also who knows what else I might find a talent for while going through it? Also, with the same college I’m studying with I am doing a weekly Wednesday night work shop with a couple of tutors and a few other students about the 3-stage plot of writing stories, I absolutely love it. It’s so educating and I’ve learned so much so far and I’ve only been doing it for two weeks 😀 I have also recently enrolled to do a days workshop on Poetry, and am also considering a palmistry workshop too as that sort of thing interests me. I am constantly looking for different workshops and lessons I can use to keep me busy but also give me that ‘learning satisfaction’.

Reading books instead of online bio’s – I’m doing a reading challenge to try and read 100 books this year. Any type of book is fine, non-fiction, young adult, biography, poetry, short books, long books etc etc so far I’ve read 12 books of various lengths so I’m doing pretty well. But my main challenge for myself is to spend more time with my hands holding a book to read then holding my phone scrolling through pointless social media stuff (it’s a very bad habit of mine that I am trying so hard to break).

Block apps in certain time frames – in light of what I’ve just said about social media.. and also learning from my iPhone settings that on average I can spend up to 6 hours in one day on social media apps etc. I have now put in some blockage screen time settings. Now, if I hit 4 hours on my phone on any social app, they become blocked from use until the next day. I’ve also set a timer on my phone to block me being able to use any of these apps between around 10.30pm and 6.30am. Hopefully this will help me condense down my time and spend more time on things that are important.

Spiritual awareness – I have got really into the spiritual side of things lately, I’ve always been fascinated by things like manifestations, universe, spirits, palmistry, horoscopes, oracles etc. So in the last couple of months I’ve spent a lot more time looking into that side of things. I’ve got some new crystals and subscribed to some good magazines in this area to help me with my journey. I’m also currently reading ‘think like a monk’ by Jay Shetty and so far it has some amazing techniques on your mindset so I’m slowly but surely working on some breath work and meditation etc to get my mindset in the right direction. But this isn’t going to be an overnight thing, it’s going to take some time.

Affirmations/Mantras – I’ve read a lot about these in my spiritual magazines and admittedly, I always wanna do them but my lazy brain tells me I don’t have the time and I forget or crack on with work etc but this is something I am working on. It is honestly amazing how affirmations or mantras to yourself are a good way to reframe your mindset.

My previous psychotherapist actually told me to try on a daily basis, to look at my reflection in the mirror and say all the things I like about myself. This is something I find personally very hard to do and I know a lot of you probably feel the same too. But honestly, your mindset can change so much if you do this sort of technique.

It’s not about being up yourself or bit headed, it’s about being compassionate towards yourself.

I’m also getting stuck in my writing a lot more which I LOVE doing. I’m working on short stories, poems, and planning out my novels. It’s all work in progress but my dream in the future is to have a few things published: a poetry book, some short stories, at least 3 novels and a nonfiction book about my personal experiences.

I just need the confidence in myself to do it all now.

Anyway, that’s my Monday post for you. Just wanted to check in and say I’m still alive and this is what I’m going through, hope everyone is staying safe and happy in these uncertain times…


  1. Hi Zoe, seems to me that you are very much alive and despite your issues getting right on top of some of them. I find your blogs inspirational myself, having suffered some of the same issues. Have you thought about putting all your thoughts down in a book, you appear to have all the raw material and many of the answers. If you do nothing else focus on the course, that’s what getting me through all this. Good luck, stay safe, Rob.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much Rob. I do always feel like just being upfront in my posts about what I feel as I think that helps people more then just pretending to be ‘fine’ all the time. Yes I have thought about it, I’m working on something on the side as a NF piece alongside my other writings. As well as completing my assignments this week 🙂 stay safe Rob!


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